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Pre-tensed and conventional starts that exert, respectively, large and small forces against the starting blocks in the “set” position (0.186 vs. 0.113 N per newton of body weight) were analyzed. The starts were videotaped, and the horizontal forces exerted on feet and hands were obtained from separate force plates. In the pre-tensed start, the legs received larger forward impulses early in the acceleration (0.18 vs. 0.15 N·s per kilogram of mass in the first 0.05 s), but the hands received larger backward impulses (–0.08 vs. –0.04 N·s·kg–1). At the end of the acceleration phase, there was no significant difference in horizontal velocity between the two types of start and only trivial differences in the center of mass positions. The results did not show a clear performance change when the feet were pressed hard against the blocks while waiting for the gun.
Faculty of Sciences of Physical Activity and Sport, University of Granada, Carretera de Alfácar, s/n, 18071 Granada, Spain
Department of Kinesiology, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA
Faculty of Sciences of Physical Activity and Sport, University of Valencia, c/Gascó Oliag 3, 46010 Valencia, Spain.